Manik Verma nee Dadarkar (1926-1996) was known all over India but especially loved in Maharashtra and Goa. She was born in a period when it was not easy for women of conservative households to obtain training in traditional music. But her immense talent led her mother, Hirabai Dadarkar to encourage her greatly. As a result, she started singing at the age of seven under the guidance of Appasaheb Bhope and then went on to receive advanced training from outstanding musicians of the ilk of Suresh Babu Mane, Azmat Hussain Khan and Jagannathbuwa Purohit.
She also had the benefit of additional taleem from Bholanath Bhatt and Inayat Khan and for a short period, from Dilipchand Vedi. Though she assimilated various styles, she derived and integrated freely from them and developed an individual style and musical expression of her own.
Graduating in Arts from University of Bombay and completing her formal study of Music from Gandharva Mahavidyalaya, she had an unusually sound grasp of both classical and semi-classical idioms. Her music also extended to light music like raga based Marathi Stage Songs called Natyasangeet, devotional lyrics and Marathi Bhavgeet.
Manik cut her first disc (Marathi Bhavgeet) at the age of 12 and had her first public performance when she was 13. She recorded her first playback when she was only 15 and at 17, gave her first major performance at a conference organised by Pandit Omkarnath Thakur in Surat. She was 21 when she won recognition as an artist in her own right, at the Tansen Conference in Calcutta in 1947 and soon established herself as a reputed exponent of Hindustani classical music.
Broadcasting regularly on AIR, she was heaped with honors and awards, including the Padmashri Award in 1974. She was also the first recipient of the Lata Mangeshkar Award by the Maharashtra Government.